Canal and River Explorers

Investigate the amazing learning opportunities that waterways can provide...

Years: 3, 4, 5, 6

Duration: 60mins

Curriculum Objectives: 25

Subjects: Art, D&T, English, Geography, Maths, PSHE, Science


Resource Overview

Each canal and river is unique, and offers powerful ways to engage pupils and bring learning to life. From water to wildlife, from traditional canal art to amazing inventions, the opportunities for cross-curricular studies are huge! The Canal and River Trust have created some fantastic and free downloadable resources linked to the UK Key Stage 2 curriculum. All of their resources can be searched by subject, topic, location and format, and some can also be adapted for Key Stage 1 and 3 children. 

Canal and River Explorers

Photo © Canal and River Trust


Resource Assets

Canal and River Explorers Resources

A range of canal and river themed teaching resources.

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Curriculum Objectives

  • Learn about great artists, architects and designers in history
  • Year 3 and 4 (Age 7-9)
    • In narratives, create settings, characters and plot.
    • Listen to and discuss a wide range of fiction, poetry, plays, non-fiction, reference books or textbooks.
  • Year 5 and 6 (Age 9-11)
    • Continue to read and discuss an increasingly wide range of fiction, poetry, plays, non-fiction and reference books or textbooks.
    • Distinguish between statements of fact and opinion.
    • Retrieve, record and present information from non-fiction.
  • Name and locate counties/cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics, key topographical features, and land-use patterns; and understand geographical change over time.
  • Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography, including: climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the water cycle.
  • Describe and understand key aspects of human geography, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water.
  • Year 5 (Age 9-10)
    • Recognise the per cent symbol (%) and understand that per cent relates to ‘number of parts per hundred’, and write percentages as a fraction with denominator 100, and as a decimal.
    • Solve problems which require knowing percentage and decimal equivalents of 1/2, 1/4, 1/5, 2/5, 4/5 and those fractions with a denominator of a multiple of 10 or 25.
    • Measure and calculate the perimeter of composite rectilinear shapes in centimetres and metres.
  • Year 6 (Age 10-11)
    • Recall and use equivalences between simple fractions, decimals and percentages, including in different contexts.
    • Recognise that shapes with the same areas can have different perimeters and vice versa.
    • Solve problems involving the calculation of percentages and the use of percentages for comparison.
  • Year 3 (Age 7-8)
    • Explore the part that flowers play in the life cycle of flowering plants, including pollination, seed formation and seed dispersal.
  • Year 4 (Age 8-9)
    • Construct and interpret a variety of food chains, identifying producers, predators and prey.
    • Explore and use classification keys to help group, identify and name a variety of living things in their local and wider environment.
    • Recognise that environments can change and that this can sometimes pose dangers to living things.
    • Recognise that living things can be grouped in a variety of ways.
  • Year 5 (Age 9-10)
    • Describe the differences in the life cycles of a mammal, an amphibian, an insect and a bird.
  • Year 6 (Age 10-11)
    • Describe how living things are classified into broad groups according to common observable characteristics and based on similarities and differences, including micro-organisms, plants and animals.
    • Identify how animals and plants are adapted to suit their environment in different ways and that adaptation may lead to evolution.